Safety measures at the Rose Bowl, site of the Jan. 3 college football national championship game, and other sports will be reviewed and significantly tightened in the wake of Tuesday's terrorist attacks.
Expect intense consideration of the use of airport-style metal detectors at stadium and arena entrances, according to stadium and arena managers as well as experts in security and counter-terrorism strategies. "It's a marvel that you can still get into a stadium without a metal detector," said Ian Lesser, an analyst and anti-terror specialist at the Rand Corp. in Washington.
Expect that showing up at the gate will mean greater scrutiny of tote bags and coolers and that being in the stands will mean being recorded more often on surveillance cameras. Many locales already use some cameras, but as Andreas Carleton-Smith, a former member of a British military special forces unit, now a security expert at Control Risks Group in Los Angeles put it, "Now it's a question of reviewing it." Expect this -- the experience of going to the game will be different because security will be more visible, the idea being that visible security serves as a deterrent. But managers and security experts also acknowledged they face a significant challenge in the coming weeks and months-to find a balance.
"One needs to balance the need for more security with the need for life to go on in a normal way," Lesser said.
Civil libertarians urged temperance and careful deliberation. "We understand the importance of security," said Ramona Ripston, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California. "But we also have to remember that people have rights and liberties."
In the aftermath of the attacks in New York and Washington, officials at virtually every sports facility in Southern California said Wednesday they already had begun -- or intend to undertake -- a wholesale security review.
"All of us in big business and public forums have to pay attention to all the 'what-ifs,' " said Tim Mead, vice president of communications for Anaheim Sports, Inc., which includes the Angels and Mighty Ducks.
Before Tuesday, he and others said, some scenarios could be dismissed outright as mere fiction. As in "Black Sunday," the 1977 movie in which a terrorist tries to blow up the Super Bowl with a blimp.
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